On Thursday, I was at D.W. Rutledge Stadium as the Judson Rockets hosted the New Braunfels Canyon Cougars in a District 25-6A match up. Judson is coming off their first loss of the season to the Steele Knights, who will very likely end up having an undefeated season. The Cougars are winless in District 25-6A.
I worked a lot of Judson games from 2003 to 2014 as a statistician, and of the few losses they had during that time frame, they avenged losses with huge wins the week after. You don’t want to oppose Judson after they lose a game.
A few weeks ago, I was called a genius on Twitter. Today, I am proclaiming myself a psychic because, before the Judson and New Braunfels Canyon game, I predicted that the game would be a blowout. I also foresaw that Judson would run wild with their underclassmen running backs in the 1st half; and in the 2nd half, the seniors would get some time at running back.
The Judson Rockets won the coin toss but deferred to the 2nd half. So they kicked off to New Braunfels Canyon to begin the game. New Braunfels fumbled the ball and Michael Malato, a Judson senior defensive player (he was a quarterback last year, but suffered a season-ending injury) recovered it. As soon as that happened, I knew the game was over. Malato’s injury paved the way for Julon Williams to step into the quarterback position last year as a freshman. Julon is the starting quarterback for Judson this year. He scored on a 23-yard run after that turnover. At the end of the 1st quarter, Judson led 21 to 0 and Julon Williams had 2 rushing touchdowns and 1 passing touchdown.
In the 2nd quarter, Julon had 2 more touchdown passes and Judson led at halftime 35 to 7. Williams had 159 total yards with all 5 touchdowns. Did I mention that he is a sophomore?
In the 3rd quarter, senior wide receiver Isaiah Gibson (number 84) replaced Julon at the quarterback position. It was weird seeing 84 taking snaps. I saw him do this in Week 5 when Judson played Clemens (and Julon was injured) and he looked as good as Julon. In the 4th quarter, Michael Malato took a few snaps at the quarterback position. Neither Gibson or Malato attempted a pass–all they did was run the ball. Senior running backs Anthony Jimenez and Adrian Salazar got to run the ball in the 2nd half.
The final score was Judson 48 and New Braunfels Canyon 16. Judson plays at Smithson Valley next week and New Braunfels Canyon will host Steele on the famous red turf at Cougar stadium.
The Cougars had a total of 96 yards. Senior running back Jonathan Rush had 41 total yards with 1 touchdown. Kristian Drake, the senior wide receiver, had 2 receptions for 19 yards and an 80 yard kick-off return for a touchdown in the the 4th quarter. My question to you is: will they have more or less total yards next game, when they play the Steele Knights? I say +/- 10 yards. If that happens, I will print my psychic business cards!
The Judson Rockets had 629 total yards and, of those, 498 came on the ground. Ten running backs (6 are underclassmen) got their name on my stat board:
FR Sincere McCormick – 10 carries for 118 yards
JR Josh West – 5 carries for 103 yards
SO Jay Miller – 7 carries for 71 yards
JR Mi’kel Jackson – 9 carries for 58 yards with 1 touchdown
SR Anthony Jimenez – 6 carries for 47 yards
SR Isaiah Gibson – 4 carries for 38 yards with 1 touchdown
SO Julon Williams – 9 carries for 28 yards with 2 touchdowns
SR Michael Malato – 4 carries for 27 yards
JR Chris Vierling – 2 carries for 7 yards
SR Adrian Salazar – 4 carries for 1 yard
Quarterback Julon Williams was also 5 of 7 passing for 131 yards with 3 touchdowns. In just one half, he had 159 total yards and 5 touchdowns. Senior wide receiver Greg Craddock had a 72-yard touchdown reception; and junior wide receiver Melvin Thompson had 2 receptions for 50 yards with 1 touchdown.
Through week 10, Jay Miller has 670 rushing yards; Mi’kel Jackson has 635; Sincere McCormick has 578; and Julon Williams has 495. I can easily see all of them hitting over 1,000 rushing yard for the season. Would that be the first time a high school football team accomplishes that? Julon is already over 1,000 passing yards.
Next week on Thursday Night Lights, we get the Brandeis Broncos and Taft Raiders, where the winner will advance to the 2015 playoffs. There’s a lot on the line. There will be a lot of running in this game with Jaylen Dukes, who has 1,169 rushing yards, and Tommy Woods, who has 779 rushing yards for Brandeis. Christian Mallard from Taft has 1,267 rushing yards. I am picking Brandeis to come out on top.
On Friday, I will be at the District 27-6A championship game between the O’Connor Panthers and the Brennan Bears. At the beginning of the season, I penciled Brennan and Brandeis in this game…I guess half of my psychic business is going to be thrown in the garbage. This will be the first time these schools will face off against each and I am excited to be there! I am expecting a close game and I pick O’Connor to win.
Here are a few teaser photos from the game.